It’s always been you – Chapter 2

The day I met you – Shawn

“Ohmigod, you have RISE OF THE DEMONS? Can we play that?”

Oh my God I like this girl, she loves to play RISE OF THE DEMONS. No girl in my school would even know about this game. I am glad I got a good neighbour. I had been worrying who my parents are forcing me to befriend. When I saw this girl at her place, staring at me and burning holes in me, frankly I was a bit scared. But she looked a lost. She has this lighter shade of auburn hair, that looked more brown and slightly curled at the ends. Her eyes were so big that they covered half of her face and she has this deep green eyes with brown at the ends of her eyeballs. She has no freckles and a flawless skin. But the thing is I don’t befriend girls, because they are a different creature, and I would be made fun of if I am seen with her. So I hate the idea of befriend your neighbour, she is new to this place, help her, she is new to school, be her friend. My Mom had been repeatedly torturing me with this crap. But now that I know this girl plays like a boy, and I very well like her. (Not that I want to be seen with her)
“Yes sure”
And guess what..she chose the most gruesome player ‘Captain Tusado’ who is the fastest contender and whose speed neither Chris nor Levi nor any other guy in our class can control. “You sure you can handle Captain Tusado?” I said, and she replied “Dude you have no idea, I am champ of this game”. I couldn’t believe it of course and said “Yeah right, lemme see whatcha got”, and she replied calmly “you’ll see it yourself”

And we played, and boy she beat me thrice in a row and won 5 games out of 7. I don’t really remember how long we have been playing, not that I enjoy losing but I was always the best in it among Chris, Levi and Me, so this was a fun game, and she was all over my bed rolling and laughing her face off every time she would beat me. I have got a competition boy, and not that I was proud of losing of a girl but I wasn’t annoyed, rather it was fun watching her, like she had a stupid kind of laugh, though it sounded cute. She starts with high pitched squeal and will continue her hehehe rountine with hiccups in regular intervals and her whole body is shakes while she laughs. Its funny and very cute, her face has turned cherry red.
She was laughing while someone knocked at my door and Mom entered and looked amused.
“What is it that made Ann laugh so much?”
And she was like heehee hiccup..hee “Aunt Gracy, I beat Shawn 5 times out of 7 and mind it he was flaunting he never loses” and she was laughing again, and her shoulder was bouncing again.
“Gosh Shawn, how did this happen? ” Mom never missed an opportunity to tease me ofcourse.

After few more minutes of laughing Mom asked Annette to stay for evening snacks, and she happily agreed. Mom treated us with orange juice and her chocolate cookies. Annette complimented my Mom and they both were conversing about baking, seems Annette is not all boy, she does have a girl traits of her, I just don’t wish to see it though. Later Annette waved us goodbyes and went to her place and Mom was praising our new neighbours but now I didn’t feel much bad about it.

It’s always been you – Chapter 1

The day I met you – Ann

“Why do we have to leave our house?” I asked my mom, half sobbing, and half expecting probably Mom would agree with me and we would stay here happily. “Ann..enough of this, we’ve already had this discussion million times. You know your Dad has whole lot of opportunities in North Carolina with his friend. Our life would be so much better there, and don’t you worry, Uncle David has a son who is of your age, in no time you’ll be friends, he is a charming lad. And of course you’ll enjoy the snow there in winter, that you can never get to see here”
“Mom, new school is never so fun, and I would miss Granpu so much and he is not even here, why does he have to be in Italy?” I choked down the lump in my throat, I never wish to leave my Granddaddy, I love him so much. “Granpu will visit every once in a while and probably just be with us on our summer vacations. His trip was planned a year back, all money paid, he cannot cancel it just because we pre pond our shifting. Remember Annette, the early you accept, the better. And now I don’t wish to discuss this again, so better pack your remaining stuff, the Movers’ van would arrive in no time” with this she left the room and I shed few more tears hugging my sugglebear but then I knew I had to pack. So I did as I was told, and van was at the door in half an hour. We drove to North Carolina in our Volkswagon Touareg and reached in approximately 10 hours.

The moment I laid my eyes on our new home, I realised it was actually not a bad idea moving here. The house was pretty big, a duplex it is with a well maintained lawn and play area with mini version of swings, slide and a seesaw, but appropriate for a 11 year old kid like me. I was more than happy and weather was pretty cold since in Florida it was scorching heat usually by this hour. We entered our mini palace and I gladly squeezed snugglebear because what was inside was way better than our home back in Florida. There was a huge living room with a plush couch that was calling me, and I just ran and pounced on it. I had this wide grin plastered on my face and I knew this was a very good decision. ‘I Love you mom and dad’. Mom led me to the kitchen and showed me the place, it was shiny black marble and beige walls. I could see my mom had tears in her eyes, and I knew she loved this house as much as I did. She is a great cook and our kitchen back home wasn’t that great, it was small room. My Dad followed us and embraced Mom in a hug, they kissed and I swooned just looking at them. Most kids don’t like their parents cuddling and romancing, but I loved to see them and I one day wish I too would get someone like my Dad. My Mom and Dad were high school sweethearts and I am proud of them. Soon I was engulfed in a family hug and I was grinning all the while. In the middle of our family time the door bell rang, and my Dad excused to get it. Now I could hear some voices from the living room of laughter and greetings. Mom straightened her skirt and combed my hair with her fingers. We went back to the living room and Dad introduced me to our neighbours ‘The Vaughans’ who happens to be my Mom and Dad’s high school best friends. They four were a group and each married their high school love.
Mrs.Vaughan was very pretty and I liked her because her smile was sweet and she got us blueberry cheese cake as a token of welcoming us to the neighbourhood. Mr.Vaughan was handsome with dark brown hair and deep green eyes that crinkled at the ends. He must be of my Dad’s age and Dad and Mr.Vaughan aka Uncle David seems pretty close to each other. My Mom and Dad are pretty friendly, unlike me. I never had a best friend ever back home, just few girls I talked to. Boys, well I hate them because they always picked at me, pulled my hair and called me names. Especially Gosh, he was one bad boy, and he was that one thing that was a reason I considered moving to California.

Mrs. Vaughan aka Aunt Gracy called out “Shawnnn.. what are you doing outside? “. A voice replied back “Nothingg”.
“So why don’t you come inside and meet out neighbours”. And there was no reply, but a minute later a boy entered whose head was low and who refused to look up. A moment later he dragged himself and plopped on our couch. A studied him for a while, he looked better than the boys back home, and he has the same hair as Aunt Gracy, a lighter shade of brown, brunette is a better term. His eyes was brilliant shade of green but when his eyes met mine, they looked bluer, just like ocean. I think he has got eye color of both his Mom Dad and that made his eyes more beautiful, a unique shade. He kept staring at me, and I continued to stare, moreover studying this boy, I have no idea how I could do this, I never had this confidence before to stare at a boy. Finally my Mom said “Ann, why don’t you show Shawn our house?”and I had to look away from him and towards my Mom. “But Mom I haven’t seen the house myself”
“Then Shawn, why don’t you show our place to Annette?” Aunt Gracy said.
“Okay” is all Shawn replied and walked ahead towards the door. As if on cue I hurried behind him and followed him. He didnt say a word and I sheepishly followed. The moment we entered his placed I was hit by the smell of baking and chocolate. I was sniffing when he noticed me and offered “Would you like to have some chocolate cookies? Mom just made them and my Mom is a great cook”.
I nodded and he handed me a plate with 4cookies. I took a small bite and the flavour filled my mouth and I took another big bite. I was chewing mouthful of cookie when he asked “Would you like to play a game?”
I said “yes” that sounded like “yeffff” and few cookie crumbs flew out of my mouth, embarrased I covered my mouth. He found it amusing and he smirked. He asked me to follow him to his room and I did. And his room was way to good. He had an enormous water bed, a bean bag, a study table that was nearly maintained. Either he is a neat freak or he never studies. I was strolling in his room, touching everything. It was beautiful, and neat. He had a television mounted on his wall and he handed me the gaming console.
“Oh God, you have your own television? That’s so cool”
“Yeah its cool but well its child locked and I am only allowed to watch specific channels and till 10pm. My Mom controls it, it’s switch is at her room”
“Still your own TV and a water bed. You are one lucky boy” he simply blushed and said “What would you play Annette? I don’t have much of girls game as I dont have friends who are girls. You can select yourself”
“Ohmigod, you have Rise of the Demons? Can we play that?”

Short Story – Come with me

It was a warm sunny Saturday, a much awaited weekend. I wanted to be home, sink in my couch, watch romantic movie marathon, and munch all the junkies left in the apartment. My roommate was at her mother’s in North Carolina, and the apartment was to myself. I was in my pajamas, didn’t take shower, prepared an egg sandwich with some hot coffee with my Mom’s gifted coffee maker. This was my ideal weekend, and everything was pleasant. I played my all time favourite movie “Titanic”, jumped on the couch and took a big bite of the sandwich and was relishing the taste when my phone rang. It was Stacey, with my mouthful I answered only to hear her screaming and blabbering “Oh my God..Oh my can this happen to man no nooo”
“Calm down Stace..shhhh..calm yourself and tell me what’s wrong?”
“Juel..Remember the client I have been working on, Browns Brothers?”
“Yeah I do..what happened? ”
“He was supposed to meet me next week, but he called just now and said he is in New York, and asked if I can meet him in an hour, as he would be off to Australia for a month..” and I could hear her swearing.
“So can’t it wait for a month?”
“Juel..are you kidding me? I need to complete this in 2 weeks, or I am so dead. My boss has already warned me, that I better get this deal done. I am sooo screwed”
“Relax Stace.. there’s gotta be some solution. Can’t he meet you tonight? You’ll be back here in 8 hours.”
“Nope, he is leaving from New York by 6 in the evening, God I am so screwed”
“So nothing can be done?”
“Actually there is one solution”
“If maybe you go there”
“Staceeee.. Have you lost your noggin mind? I am an architect, how am I supposed to understand what you Accountants do?”
“I have my reports ready, I would tell him you are on my behalf. Also while you are on your way, I’ll explain you few things”
“Nooo man, I can’t do it”
“Yea Ofcourse you won’t do it, let my dream job go off my palms, let me be jobless, it’s ok Juel, Talk to you later”
Yeah I know her, she’ll not cut the call, and I have to do it.
“Alright,  don’t be melodramatic, I’ll do it”
“ you sooo much Juliana DeThomas, You are the best”
“Yeah now let me get ready, till then I’ll keep the call on loudspeaker, you tell me where is what, and what all things I need to take”
“Yeah first, wear something formal, your pencil cut skirt will be awesome”
“Don’t forget to put on some makeup.. Love you”
“Yeah fine, but I first need to shower”
“Oh come on Juel, what were you doing till now?”
“Well it was my weekend, that you damned, and you know I don’t shower on weekends I stay home”
“Alright sorry, you get shower, till then I’ll think of what you need to know”
After I came out, and called her, she listed all the things I need to carry, and she said “Jonathan Brown, MD in Brown Brothers & Co., belongs to an affluent family, his time is precious, he will not wait for more than half an hour, so you need to convince him in that time.”
“Stacee..I can’t do this, you may lose this opportunity because of me”
“I am anyway losing,  no harm in trying. Also I have faith in you”
“Alright, I hope things go well”
I took a cab to Café Brewers, and while in cab Stace explains me things I can say in a time frame of 30 minutes. When I reach there, she wishes me luck and says “He would be on our favourite seat as I  instructed Jeff” Well Jeff was our favourite coffee boy.
I kept my phone on silent, and moved ahead while I straighten my shoulders, and try to compose myself to meet a billionaire or at least a millionaire, not sure though. The man was in black suit and appeared to be young from his back posture. I went ahead and stood in front of him and our eyes locked. He was a young fellow, with black hair, deep green eyes, that you can see through, straight nose, thin lips. A very attractive man who was checking me out. Possibly I seemed out of place. I offered my hand, while introducing myself “Juliana DeThomas, on behalf of Stacey McCains”
“Jonathan Brown, from Brown Brothers & Co.” He had a crooked smile, with a firm grip. He kept looking at me, as if he could read my face and that made me more self conscious. He didn’t leave my hand and I was standing there, waiting for him to ungrip my arm. Finally he broke his grip and waved to have a seat and asked if I need something. I sat there uncomfortably trying to hide myself from his penetrating gaze and said I don’t need anything. I checked my watch to keep track of my time. it was 1.30 pm and I knew he would not bear me more than 15mins.
I started explaining him about the deal Stacey means to propose. He seemed amused by my blabbering, and I sounded funny to myself too. So ignoring his smirks, his glistening green eyes, his pretty face, his strong jaw; I kept on with what Stace had explained me. He didn’t ask me a thing, I wonder if it was good or bad, mayhap I was entertaining to him. Now I was done with whatever Stace explained me, but how do I end this? It was 2.15 pm now and he was still sitting there watching me.
“Thank you Sir for being kind enough to listen what I meant to convey, you can ask me anything you want, and I would try and explain to the best of my capabilities”
And I had zero capability in Accounts.
“Julian DeThomas, what do you do?”
“I am an Architect Sir”
“Really that’s good, how much experience you have?”
“I have 2 years of experience Sir”
“Can you show me any of your work?”
Is this my interview? If so I am not interested.
“Sure Sir”
And I type the URL of the website of the site under construction. I move my chair so I am beside him and show him the floorplans. He pulled the phone from my hands and our fingers brushed briefly. He zoomed the images and studied it for sometime. Then eyed me suspiciously.
“You really have made this?”
“Yes, not alone though. Sir”
“Stop suffixing your statements with ‘Sir'”
“Sorry Sir.. I mean Sorry”
“Alright, so would you like to work for my company? I would pay you double”
I was short of words, my throat went dry. I don’t know what to say. Frankly I know my work isn’t this great that I would be offered double, and my heart started beating unevenly and my words fell out of my mouth before I could hold them
“So Stacey’s Proposal is accepted? ”
“Yes only if you accept to work at my company”
What kind of frigging deal is that. I am not such great a resource. “Where is your company located? What am I gonna do there?”
“It’s in many states in US, and in England,  Australia, India, Japan. And you would construct buildings like what you do now. Not sure if you know but ours has Construction too. Brown Constructions? Have you heard of us?”
“No way.. It’s one of the top Construction companies in States”
“Thank you, So would you? ”
“Alright, mostly yes but I need to think, Please? ”
“Sure take your time, call me when you have made your decision” And he placed his Business card on the table. I took it and fanged it tight like my life is depended on it. I stood up, unable to control my flatter. He offered his hand and I took it, he gave me a light squeeze and I felt light headed, lost in the depth of his eyes, his lopsided smile.
And I left and walked as fast as I can to get away from his gaze. When I checked my watch it was 3 pm. I checked my phone, and there was 20 missed calls from Stace. I called her and told her everything. And she said “Juel accept the offer, you’ll get double and into this big a company. ” And yes I thought why not.
“Juel you there? if yes then should I inform him?”
“He gave me his number”
“Whoa! that’s a leap, is he into you Juel?”
“Oh come on! do not day dream, I need a lunch for this favour I did on you.”
“Anytime sweetheart”
We hung up..and I was lost in my thoughts.

A day when I wanted to watch movies and be home, I got a handsome job offer. What next?

P.S: Life is full of surprises, you never know when your life takes a different turn.

Short Story – The Unexpected

It was late evening, when I was rushing from my hotel to the Bus stand, for returning home. It was a 5 day business trip and I was totally exhausted. I reached the bus stand on time but the bus was an hour late. I passed my time by munching some snacks, sipping some coffee, and loitering around. I had some unusual conversations about politics (The hot topic) with total strangers at the Café. The bus arrived by 10 in the night. I needed some sleep as the next day I was expected to reach in the second half of the day, I had some good pending work and I would get no time to rest. I boarded the bus, and got the window semi-sleeper seat and had the next seat empty. I quickly dozed off, and the next moment at around 12 am I woke up by some elbow shoved on my arm. I woke up, brushed my eyes with my fingers and looked at that dark face. The lights were off and I couldn’t see much of that man’s face. He apologised in a husky voice for the accidental push and I just said it’s alright in a bugged manner and slept off. After some short while I was again pulled from my sleep by some tapping on my arm. I looked at him and I could see his face, he had this square jaw with dimpled chin, full lips, big brown eyes, thick eyebrows, and straight nose. He was standing and looking at me as if he was studying me. I quickly came to my senses and realised my hair would be a mess. I pulled my hair in a ponytail and raised an eyebrow questioning the reason for waking me up?
He understood and said “The bus has halted for some early morning breakfast and..”
I understood what he meant and I realised I need to pee. I thanked him and got down the bus behind him. I went to the washroom and came back to see him sipping coffee. I never liked travelling alone and I didn’t mind talking to my co-seater. I took some coffee, and grabbed a pack of potato chips. I stood beside him and smiled. He smiled back but didn’t say a word. It was 4.30 am and it was pretty dark out there, I finished my coffee and was about to get on the bus when he said from behind “Seems you get good sleep in bus”
and I was a bit embarrassed.
I turned and nodded, he smiled and continued “I can’t sleep in those seats”
I smiled and replied, “I know but I have had travelled a lot to get used to those seats.”
And without waiting for him to reply I got into the bus and sat on my seat. Soon he joined me and offered some cookies. I took one and offered him chips. He took few and we started feeding ourselves silently. I initiated the conversation saying “So you going back home or for some work?”
“Home, I was here for some work, you? ”
“Same here”
“What do you do?”
“I am a Sales Manager, and was here for some quotation work”
“Same here. Wow, so much common between us” and he now was smiling.
I now turned to rest my back on the glass window, and pulled my left leg on seat and was now facing him, watching intently. I now wondered if he is of some rival firm? I asked, “What sort of products do you deal with?”
“Furnishings, you?”
Thank god, he isn’t of my rival and I replied “Plastic, as raw material” and he smiled, as if he too felt some relief. We ate some and talked some more. I didn’t realise when we both dozed off, and when I woke up, he was gone, but there was a newspaper on the neighbouring seat with a name and contact number on it. I was now smiling for unknown reasons. His name is Josh, and I now realised we didn’t introduce ourselves. My stop was arriving, I grabbed my belongings and that newspaper, got down off the bus, took a cab and without a second thought dialed that number. A guy answered the call with the familiar sound, yes it’s him and I was grinning now. And after a second I said “Hey Josh” and he replied “I knew you would call” and then I said “Katherine it is, and see you at Town Café, on fourth block at 5?”
and he agreed. I was smiling all the while in that cab, I didn’t bother about my pending work, but I wanted to see him. I don’t know what’s in the future but I want to be his friend at the least and this journey gave me something unexpected.

Life is full of surprises, live it without expectations and life would give plenty of reasons to smile.

Poem – Losing a friend

My dear friend, don’t be afraid
I am here, you won’t be betrayed

With every beat, of my heart
I would always be at every start

Aware that friends, you have many
I am just another, for you not worth a penny

Walk away, from me you do
I can’t choose a path, different from you

For my love, you may not value
I can’t seem to find a way to beguile you

Precarious I am, on your wish
I cannot stand this anguish

One day, you may find me a necessity
I may not be disposed, you may be undesirable.

Short story – From Best Friends To Lovers


A beautiful journey of Friendship


We are at the Coffee Shop sitting opposite to each other, it is like any other day but still it is special, moreover it is different and a bit awkward. I and Ravi have been best friends since we were in fifth grade. We two never felt the need of anyone else, rather no one felt comfortable enough when we were together. We always had our secret jokes and we preferred to keep them secret. Because some jokes when explained loses its essence. It’s roughly been 8 years of our friendship and we realized that we always come back to each other even though we were dating others. Probably because I know that no one understands me better than Ravi, perhaps he feels the same.

After some brainstorming one day, we came to this ridiculous but luring decision, actually Ravi came up with it saying “Hey Anju, why don’t we try dating each other? We are so comfortable with each other, we don’t fight, and we know how to cheer each other up. We had slept together several times, I mean literally” with his pretentious grin. But I voted against saying “Firstly I literally slept beside you when we were 10, we don’t do that now, and also I don’t want to wreck out friendship. It really means a lot to me”
“Yeah to me too, but we can still give it a try”
“Look I always come to you when I have a break up, when I have fights with others, issues in my family, but if I break up with you, to whom would I go?”
“Yeah but we both aren’t like any other couple, we gel so good together, we know what hurts each other, so we can try it, right?”
“All right, just one date, okay?”
“Yeah deal”
And we decided to go on a date the next day. And first time in my life was I concerned on how I look, how I dress up while I am going out with Ravi. And yes the funny part is I wore makeup, I dabbed my sister’s red lipstick, applied some mascara, blushed my cheeks in a pink shade. I was uneasy but that’s what dates are, present yourself in a way you are not. I wore my sister’s black short lace dress with 3/4 sleeves and wore my red pumps (yes I only wear them on parties and dates). When I reached, he was already there (he usually is late) and that was the first reminder, that we are on a date. He stood up to greet me, and I caught the surprise in his eyes. He was surprised to see me in a short dress and makeup, probably because I always wear jeans and no makeup. I smiled and sat down, yes I now realize I overdid things, it was just another day, but he too wore a leather jacket, which seems brand new. And I could feel the nervousness in his air, maybe a reflection of what I am feeling. We ordered our cappuccinos and two grilled chicken sandwiches, our favorite meal. I wonder if I have to eat with a fork, but I prefer eating a sandwich with my hands. We sat quiet, he was intently looking at me, observing me, I was absorbed in his gaze, and I felt hesitant. My shoulders shrunk, and I hoped that the ground would absorb me, I felt like a fool to dress up like a bimbo, hmph.
He finally said “You looking very pretty, how come I haven’t seen you like this before?”
“It’s Pari’s dress, and I am wearing a makeup” and it feels disgusting
“Yeah I can see that, and it looks lovely, you look like a glam girl”
“yeah right, would you stop teasing me? I know I look weird, I shouldn’t have tried this”
And he suddenly held my hand and said “You look lovely Anju, I feel like a douche to not have seen your beauty before, I have always loved you as a best friend, lately I felt much more than friendship, so I talked you into this date proposal, and I am flushed by your beauty, why do you hide it?”
“I don’t hide it, it’s just not me”
“It is you, the dress isn’t yours but can be yours, every girl wears makeup, so it is you, and there is no harm in glamorizing yourself”
“I feel spurious”
“You aren’t fake, you are the same girl I had always liked to be with”
And suddenly I went silent and recalled our conversation in my head, and boom! He confessed he is feeling more than friendship for me lately and the words blurt out of my mouth before I try holding them “You love me?”
“Yeah it seems so, I keep thinking about you, whenever I am with a girl, I compare her with you and you win, when I am with guys, I find you more fun, and I don’t know how I started feeling so, I tried avoiding our study meets at your place, also our lunch, I couldn’t behave normal and I wanted to hold you, play with your hair, be the reason for your laughs, and I felt jealous when Sahil tried charming you. I didn’t want to spoil our friendship but this new feeling is out of my hands and I can’t handle it” and his grip tightened, I could also see water in his eyes. Our order was done and Preetam Singh (the owner of the coffee shop) called Ravi to pick his order. He then left the grip and pulled his arm away from me, and went to get the order, I now have few moments of peace to process this new information, because somehow I wasn’t able to think while he was holding my hand. I was trying to recall of any change in his behavior lately, and yes on further thinking I realized he had been avoiding me several times, he had been avoiding even touching my arms. I could think of last 2 months and his behavior was different.
He comes back with our order and I ask him even before he sits “How long have you been feeling this for me?” and his expression went deadpan.

After like eternity he blushed, and I missed a heartbeat just looking at him blush. He then said “I don’t know the exact day I felt for you, but maybe each day I was falling for you, when Sahil made pass at you the first time half a year ago, when you were hospitalized for Malaria, when I was coaching you for the missed home works. Each day I looked in your eyes I fell a little more in their depth, each time you shoved an arm in me playfully, I felt deep for you. It took time for me to realize but I did when I and Rashmi had a fight”

“That was because of you, to break up with you after your team’s loss at the cricket tournament, she blamed everything on me, when I was never in the picture”

“You were, I mean I never told you why Rashmi and I broke up, it was because I started feeling for you, I always used to mentally compare her with you, and I couldn’t find her worthy. When we lost the tournament, I wanted to be with you, but you went with your girls, and I was with Rashmi”

“She always gave me a stink-eye, and I knew she needed time with you”

“I know that, but when she tried consoling me, I instead told her please I don’t want you, I want Anju, and she chose to make fun of you before breaking up with me”

“Hmmm.. so I am the reason of your breakup? This means her outburst was fair enough”

“Her outburst would have been fair if it was on me, not you, she was wrong”

“So how deep are you in love with me?” I chuckled while asking this question. And he now had a sweet childish smile on his face, and said “You enjoying this, aren’t you? You are such a devil”

“Yeah it feels good” and I had a stupid grin on my face, I couldn’t contain my excitement.

“So how about we discuss, how you feel about me?” and his expression again went blank.

“I haven’t put much thought to it, but I would consider” I know I sound rubbish, because I hated it when he had girlfriends.

“Ohh come onnn.. Do you really think I am that big a fool? Have you ever dressed so elegantly for any other date? And I know how much you hate borrowing your sister’s dress, and make up? And pumps? Come on, you wanted me to fall in love with you, which I already am”

I could only flush crimson, and I was short of words, what I instead did was hold his hand in confirmation to what he has just said. And he punched my left arm by his right arm hinting we still would be best friends apart from being lovers, and we laughed.


To have a best friend and a lover is great, but to have that one person as a best friend and a lover is amazing.


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The moment of Love in Friendship

The moment of Love in Friendship


Characters: Emily Steve, Emanuel Perkins




I and Emanuel had been the best of friends since sophomore, we met in our freshman year when he shifted to Atlanta. He was this tall fair boy with auburn hair and I was brunette with braces. We had this crazy idea of watching classic movies and look for faults (generation gap) and laugh out loud. We used to have this session every week while we were in high school, but as the years passed things gradually changed. Week turned to Month, Month to a Year, but whatever we had been doing, we would take time out of our work, home, our girlfriend/ boyfriend and do watch it in 6 months or at least a year.

It was New Years’ time, and the streets were filled with snow, and the temperature dropped to -8°C. Emanuel have had rough patch lately and I too wasn’t doing any great. Emanuel’s father have had an accident and was recovering so he didn’t feel good enough to celebrate. I too had a bad month where 4 of my articles were rejected in Times Now. I own a column in Times where I usually deal with Single Girls issues with Men and Job. I was not able to concentrate and was on the verge of quitting (rather on the verge of being terminated). There was a lot of things missing in my life, job that ones enlightened me, father who is more engrossed in his own life, in lame fame of his lame books that old ladies love (I wonder why), mother whom I don’t feel comfortable enough to share my views, brother who has lately turned 16 and is fooling around in college, No love in my life, All in All I was near to a breakdown and needed a friend more than anything. Chelsea had gone to her grand mom for Christmas vacation, and I miss her soo much. So I gave Emanuel a call wondering if he could follow our ritual of watching some crap old movie by which way I can have a laugh and lighten my life.

I was inserting the DVD when someone rang the doorbell, it’s got to be Emanuel as I expect no one at the moment, and yes it’s him. We have this weird way of greeting each other, Emanuel calls me Ma Vie, since we took French as our subject, he referred me as his life and I call him Ma Femme meaning my Wife. We were all kiddish and we used to talk in French whenever possible. So he hollers Ma Vie when we hug, and I holler even louder in his ears Ma Femme, and we burst out laughing, it feels so great meeting him again after a year.

The first thing he inquires is, “What’s in the meal?” yeah the last thing I would want to do is cook on a New Year’s eve. I reply holding a hand on my tummy “I thought you have come to cook me some feast, I am starving.. Cook me a delicacy..Yummmm”. And he is all like “A girl is meant to cook, bake breads”. He knows this will instigate me to kick his arse. I rather muss his hair (he LOVES his hair) which triggers him and we are all cushion fighting around my couch, jumping, climbing, shoving our hands into each other’s stomachs and there we both lay on the couch panting.

Emanuel: “Hmphh..” pant pant ” you are getting old and cranky” pant pant pant.. “Old Lady Agnes”.

(Mrs. Agnes James was the crankiest lady we have ever seen in our neighborhood)

Me: “Hmmmphh” pant pant pant “Look who is talking, you Bruno”.

(Bruno was my old cat, he was the laziest cat and would just lay on the floor like a carpet).

And he nudges me and we both laugh louder.


We order 2 large pizzas, I order pizza Super Supreme (Beef, ham, pepperoni, Italian sausage, onion, mushroom, pineapple, capsicum, Kalamata style olives, mozzarella, tomato sauce) and he orders Hot ‘n’ Spicy Pepperoni (Pepperoni, hot jalapenos, onion, diced tomato, mozzarella, tomato sauce), and some beer. It will take approximately 30 minutes for our meal to arrive, so for the time being I’ve prepared some cheese popcorn. We play the movie “How to Marry a Millionaire” (1953) by Jean Negulesco and put on our blankie. Emanuel is a huge fan of Marilyn Monroe. As per the title Emanuel starts teasing me with the crap, that girls traps a guy for money, to raise my Adrenaline level. But I am in no mood, rather I am not even paying attention to the movie. Thankfully our pizzas arrive, and I pounce on it (not literally). We finish up our meal and talk about our job, his dad, my dad (his books, Urgh) and the movie plays in the background but we are immersed in each other. I feel like i am in high school, no job, no deadlines, and no worries. We are long done with our meals and as if he could sense my apathy, he turns off the television. We still talk while there is complete silence except of our voices. I don’t realize when we shifted and our distance is bridged, and I could inhale his smell, of body wash, pizza, his perfume (Ambre Antique by Coty), as long as I can recall, he has always smelled of L’Origan, La Rose Jacqueminot, or Ambre Antique, all by Coty). His Uncle lives in France, and always gifts him perfumes by Coty, he has some connection I guess. When I closely notice him, his hair look beautiful and his eyes are brown and big and his smile is lush. I want to tousle his hair, not because I want to tease him, but because I want to feel him. I almost feel myself pouting as if I am offering him to kiss me. I could no longer remember how to breathe, and I have been holding my breath. I don’t understand how to react to this new feeling I have for my old best friend. Never in my life have I thought of him as anything but a Buddy. I feel I would melt here in the couch, or burn to ashes by the heat I feel within. My cheeks starts flushing scarlet, and the only thing I can do to stop my haywire thoughts is go away. But where!

Hoping these feeling are transient, I rush towards kitchen saying I need to drink water. I should be given an Oscar for such a genius idea when I have a bottle of water beside the couch. Before he could say something, I scurry to the kitchen as if my tail caught fire. I feel the sudden burning sensation from throat to the pit of my stomach, and my heart is thumping loudly and I am sure he could hear it. It’s darn audible in this silence, I could feel the pounding of my heart, and in the attempt of hushing my heart I hold left side of my chest with both hands as if my heart would run away. Emanuel comes in the kitchen while I am standing there frozen, and my brain goes numb with this feeling. I don’t want to wreck our friendship for this stupid transient feeling that is probably out of emptiness in my life.


Emanuel: “Hey Ma Vie, you alright?” I can see his concern on his face.

Me: “Nothing Emanuel” ‘What!!!! Did I just called him by his first name??? I have call him by his name like after a decade, what is wrong with me’

He comes soo close to me that we are inches away. he holds my face in his palms and lifts it forcing me to look up to him. And before I could get away by saying “Nothing Me Fe…” he puts his right hand’s index finger on my lips, there by shutting me up. He takes a big sigh like after an eternity of silence, and says “Emie, do you feel something?” my heart pounds and I flush crimson but I can’t think of a single word fit for a reply to his question.

He inches closer and we are at a distance that if I pout, I could kiss his chin. I am sweating in this cold weather and feel like my body temperature is hitting 60°C. He then says “I wonder why haven’t you ever felt such, I was always craving for your attention, I always thought you were the best girl in my life, and I always meant when I said Ma Vie, because yes I always felt that you were my life. Hmpphh.. You had never considered me as anything but a friend and I respected that. But now that I could see it in your eyes, I can’t let this moment get away. I want you to know Emie that you were the first Love of my life, I have had my crushes, I have had my share of relationships, but deep down I always felt for you. I just want you to know, that if I have misinterpreted your emotions, then I am extremely sorry, because I don’t want to lose our friendship. I just want to..” and before he could express more or before he feels more sorry about what he said, I pull his finger from my lips, and the next moment my lips is on his. I could feel the warmth and softness, and I close my eyes and wrap my arms around his neck and let myself burrow myself in his arms.

After an eternity, I open my eyes and see him smiling. I feel home, relieved in his arms and I am sure he feels the same. A feeling I have never had before. I realize that all the while I had been looking around when what I needed was him. And I soo wish that he becomes my Ma Vie and I become his Ma Femme.


I found my moment of love in our friendship.